Why Didn’t My DIRECTV DVR Record My Show?


Q. I set my DIRECTV HD DVR to record last week’s Better Call Saul on AMC, but it didn’t record! Any ideas as to why it didn’t record? And, is there any way to check to see if I set it right? — Candy, Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Candy, there’s nothing more frustrating than to sit down to watch a favorite show on your DVR only to suddenly discover that it’s not there! In your case, there could be a few reasons why your HD DVR didn’t record Better Call Saul.

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First, it’s possible the show aired at a time when your DIRECTV system was shut down by a storm or some electrical malfunction in your home. I’m not saying that’s likely, but it is possible.

Second, you may have set your HD DVR to record some other shows at the same time that Better Call Saul was airing on AMC. If your DVR is able to only record two shows at the same time, it will record the two shows that have the highest priority ranking in your recording list. In this case, Better Call Saul may have been ranked behind two other shows. (You can set a show to record at the highest priority in the Menu selections when you set it to record.)

If you have the DIRECTV Genie HD DVR, you can record five shows at the same time. But even then, if your set-top is set to record six shows at the same time, it will choose the five with the highest priority.

So, in the future, if you want to ensure that a certain show is recorded, it would be wise to give it the highest priority ranking.

Now, you asked if there is a way to check to see if you set the HD DVR to record the show. Well, not really. But you can look at the history of your recordings by pressing Menu on your remote control, then select Recording, then Manage Recordings and then History.

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The History list will give you a run-down of every show you’ve recorded over the last few weeks. Or, at least, the ones you tried to record. In some cases, there may be a ‘Failure’ designation next to the title. If there is, you’ll know that you correctly set the DVR to record, but something happened that prevented it from recording. Click on the title in the History section and you’ll likely get an explanation as to why it didn’t record.

Finally, while last week’s Better Call Saul was a first-time (first-run) airing, a repeat episode will not record if your settings are set to only record ‘first-run’ airings. You can check your recording settings by clicking on Manage Recordings.

Okay, one more thing. If this is the first time your show didn’t record, it’s probably one of the reasons I cited above. However, if this is a recurring issue, you may need a new DVR from DIRECTV.

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6 comments on “Why Didn’t My DIRECTV DVR Record My Show?”

  1. There is a way with DirecTv to check in advance what recordings are scheduled for in the current guide data window – typically 2 weeks. Under the main menu select “Recordings” then “Manage Recordings” and finally “To Do List”. This will list in date/time order which upcoming programs are scheduled and will be recording. Conflicts will also be identified.

  2. I have to say, this has always been frustrating wth the DirecTV DVRs. This literally never happened with TiVo. With the Stanley Cup Playoffs going on, I have my Genie set to record anything “Islanders,” but it is refusing to auto record any games. I have to manually set it for each game. This is one of the reasons I went to NHL GameCenter (NHL.tv) a couple of seasons ago. I never miss an islanders game anymore (except for playoffs). It is inexcusable.

  3. There are times when I have found shows that I have on record series fail to record and there are no conflicts. In looking at the guide there is no record indicator shown.

  4. I set series recordings and an episode gets skipped. (This is us, long road home, trial & error are the three shows I can cite without a doubt) I assumed a conflict. (Nope) I searched for the episodes and miraculously [?] those skipped episodes aren’t available. But oddly, I can pay to stream them online through YouTube or the network app. Coincidence? Highly doubt considering how shady and low people are in the media industry.

  5. I have been having an issue with my shows and movies not recording. They are on the ‘To Do’ list without conflict and there is enough DVR space. The history simply lists them as “Cancelled,” no explanation given – all it says is, “This showing is over.” There have not been that many storms or power surges. Several of these have been shows on cable channels in their regular time slots (so not a Guide change or preemption). So the last sentence of this article states to get a new DVR, but won’t I lose all my recordings if I get a new DVR? Won’t my bill increase and I have to sign a new 2 year contract? Do they even work with the old – school tube TVs?

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